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CHANDLER, AZ-Retail behemoth Wal-Mart is facing a setback in its controversial plan to site a supercenter in this suburb southeast of Phoenix. The retailer, which is planning a store for Arizona Avenue and Willis Road, recently learned that the sale of the parcel was cancelled after a land sale contract expired in June.

Mesa Attorney Robert Pew, who represents Continental properties, which was to have purchased the land for Wal-Mart from Capital Pacific Homes, said negotiations to extend the land contract are continuing, however.

Wal-Mart has been fighting for three years to site a super center in this city. Neighbors of the proposed development have long objected to Wal-Mart’s plans because the proposed store would be too close to their homes.

In 2001, protests by residents stopped construction of a Wal-Mart at Alma School and Queen Creek roads and prompted the city council to enact a “big box” ordinance requiring large, single-use retail buildings to be at lease 1,500 feet from nearby homes. The 207,000-sf Wal-Mart proposed for Arizona Avenue and Willis Road would be within 300 feet of neighboring houses.

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